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Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

12/17/2016 10:19 AM

"A spinning, supermassive black hole may have sucked in a star and “spaghettified” it, creating an incredibly bright light in a far-off galaxy, astronomers announced on Monday.

The light was so bright that astronomers first thought that it was the explosion of the brightest supernova in recorded history. It was 20 times brighter, at its peak, than the amount of light put out by all of the Milky Way, according to the European Southern Observatory. But now, they have a stronger theory. If a spinning, huge black hole at the center of this galaxy— as massive as 100 million suns, at least— pulled in a passing star and shredded it, that would have created the incredibly luminous event."

http://www.foxnews.com/science/2016/12/14/huge-black-hole-may-have-turned-star-into-spaghetti.html

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#1

Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

12/17/2016 12:26 PM

That is a nice artist's impression video of a star falling into a black hole.

I wonder what, if any, spectral or other trait tipped these astrophysicists into thinking this was not a supernova. If nothing differentiates these methods of stellar death then might this change our perception of stellar evolution that results in a supernova?

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#2
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Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

12/17/2016 12:41 PM

Their light curves serve to differentiate among the various types of supernovae, but this one's light curve didn't follow any of those, not to mention its extraordinary brightness even by supernova standards.

Also some types of supernovae (such as type II) dissipate much of their energy in the form of neutrinos. Type II are the brightest supernovae at optical wavelengths but, even so, the light emitted often represents less than 3% of the total energy released; the rest as a giant pulse of neutrinos, so I'm wondering what the world's neutrino observatories saw that might corroborate the shredded-star hypothesis? Possibly nothing?

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#3

Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

12/17/2016 9:22 PM

The 'tidal disruption' shown in the video is not really accurate. The star does not remain intact, leaving a trail like meteor might when plunging through Earth's atmosphere. More of an "artist's conception" perhaps? Supercomputer simulations based on the actual physics of a disruption show quite a different picture; something more like this:

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#4
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Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

12/18/2016 7:36 AM

I was wondering about that too. Very nice. Thanks

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#5

Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

12/19/2016 5:45 AM

Supermassive black holes seem capable of turning nouns into new past participles too: <...spaghettified...>....

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#7
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Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

12/19/2016 12:54 PM

Any word can be verbed!

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#15
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Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

12/20/2016 3:36 AM

What a wonderful language.

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#16
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Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

12/20/2016 3:53 AM

If black holes are black because of their tremendous gravity, are white holes white because of their tremendous levity?

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#17
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Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

12/20/2016 10:40 AM

Have you ever seen a white hole? It would almost seem that looking into the "event horizon" of a white hole, one would be highly repulsed. Or rather blown away?

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#18
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Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

12/20/2016 11:09 AM

I thought the big bang was the only known white hole.

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#19
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Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

12/20/2016 11:30 AM

So that is what happens when the universe is swallowed by the final black hole, and spit out the other end? Shirley, there has to be an end to the hole somewhere. I think there is more than one hole in that theory?

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#6

Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

12/19/2016 12:49 PM

Maybe, the better question should be, do black-holes ever totally (fill-up)?...

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#8
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Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

12/19/2016 12:55 PM

They don't fill, they get bigger, like my cousin Luigi.

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#9
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Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

12/19/2016 12:57 PM

No, but they love spaghetti!

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#10
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Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

12/19/2016 12:58 PM

You sparked a curious question in me. If a black hole is given enough anti-matter can enough matter be annihilated for it cease to be a black hole?

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#11
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Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

12/19/2016 1:04 PM

No, because the reaction products (gamma rays and neutrinos) would have the same equivalent mass as the original matter + antimatter and it would remain a black hole. Regardless of what happened inside it cannot escape and so the BH would only get bigger and more massive by the amount of antimatter added.

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#12
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Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

12/19/2016 2:55 PM

It's hard to say what ordinary matter (and energy) 'becomes' at the singularity at a black hole's centre. Whatever 'it' is, it has mass, certainly, and black holes can have net angular momentum and electric charge, but infalling matter and energy may not retain their identity as such once they become part of the singularity. Would matter and antimatter even be distinguishable from each other by that point? I don't know.

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#20
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Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

12/20/2016 4:43 PM

I thank you for giving my question serious consideration...

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#13

Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

12/19/2016 4:21 PM

Neal deGrasse Tyson's Death by Black Hole describes this.

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#14

Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

12/19/2016 4:56 PM

I don't know but it (almost) burned out my computer screen due to high gamma.

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#21
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Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

01/09/2017 8:28 PM

Maybe you should try to contact Dr. Bruce Banner. I've heard that he is quite the expert on high-level gamma exposure...

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#22
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Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

01/10/2017 11:00 AM

There are two kinds of gamma - one is the screen brightness gain, the other is photons of ionizing radiation. I was referring to the former, not the latter. But thanks for the reminder. I am mostly myself today, not the green guy.

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#23
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Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

01/11/2017 12:14 PM

If you're not, then who is?...

Or, has that job been outsourced too?...

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#24
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Re: Huge Black Hole May Have Turned Star into 'Spaghetti'

01/11/2017 12:37 PM

I am sort of managing my nicotine deficient raging, and have been warned, so yes, it has been outsourced.

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